UMM Receives Grant to Help Prepare Maine's Teachers

Grant Award will Help Prepare Teachers for State-wide Laptop Program

MACHIAS, ME – Thanks to a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF), teachers graduating from the University of Maine at Machias will soon be better prepared to teach within the state.

The Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Service Center at UMM has been awarded a $25,000 supplemental grant from the NSF to purchase Apple laptops for the school’s education program.

Since 2002, the Maine Department of Education’s Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI) has provided all 7th and 8th graders and all high school teachers in the state with Apple laptops. Soon the initiative will provide laptops to all high school students as well.

Currently, the Teacher Education Program at UMM has no Apple computers to use in training teachers, which means that they are graduating from the program with little to no experience with the equipment their students are using.

The new machines purchased with the grant award will be used in the education program’s learning technology course and in modules in other education courses, focusing on a wide range of computer applications, and addressing the theory and practice of technology education.

The supplemental award is part of the project “A Collaborative Model for Geospatial Technology Education in a Rural Region”, in which higher education partners have been collaborating with the Maine Department of Education’s MLTI. Project partners, including the University of Maine at Machias, University of Southern Maine, and University of Maine at Farmington, have committed to helping to promote and improve GIS education through the state’s laptop program.

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